The Irish Punchestown festival of jumps racing continues with Day 2 action from a little after midnight Australian time. The one race I’m keen to bet into is Race 4 from 2.30am AEST with some familiar names engaged and we are focused on the runner we have had a bit of success with recently that looks ideally placed to land another Group 1 race.
Punchestown Race 4 – Sizing John – 4 units @ $2.06 to win
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Punchestown Race 4 – 4920m – CHS-G1
1. Champagne West: A talented up-and-comer with a Timeform rating of 176X coming into this race. Career peak was a 176+ rating last prep which defied anything we had seen prior or since with a giant fail at Cheltenham behind Sizing John over the 5200m. No weight benefit today and strikes a similar Good to Yielding surface that doesn’t appear ideal to produce this horses best jumping. Happy to take on at the price.
2. Coneygree: A lightly raced type that has been defeated just twice in his past nine races. It took Cue Card to knock him off last start over 4800m in this class and over a similar distance on a Heavy surface. Career peak run that is good enough to measure up in this race today was more than a year ago and the two runs since don’t cut the mustard at this level.
3. Djakadam: Consistent type at the top level having faced G1 company the past 6 starts. WOn just 1 of those 6 which was a 5 horse field when $1.80 favourite here beating Outlander back in december. Always seems to run a very valid race, but first up this prep was fairly beaten 4th behind Sizing John. Improvement expected today… but has never won in it’s life on a Good track so the Good to Yielding rating is certainly against him and his Timeform Ratings the past few runs have been 170-174+ range apart from the Punchestown win recording a 177+
4. Flemenstar: An ageing 11YO… he has failed to fire the past three starts beaten significantly on all occasions. Last win was in G1 over 3400m (significantly shorter) in a 6 horse race on a Heavy track. Even on his best ratings this is far beyond him.
5. Outlander: Has the ratings to go toe-to-toe with this field on past runs. He was a huge disappointment first up when didn’t travel well according tot he jockey and may also have not fancied the Good surface with a record of just 1 win from 10 starts. His past ratings of 176 and 176? the previous two starts before the fail have him a player.
6. Sizing John: The standout runner of the field. Has won three in a row including two Group 1s, this bloke will be around for a long time being just a 6YO and he is the absolute real deal. Recorded a career best of 181+ Timeform rating three back over the 4000m on a soft surface before a 4860m and 5270 win on soft and good with ratings of 175+ and 177+. We know from last start is he proven to be able to run a rating that should take out this race and i’m happy to go in at the odds available.
Comments: Sizing John is super consistent and we can trust the horse to produce the run required on this surface. Coneygree is the horse I would fancy to be the one to knock off Sizing John, but the ground will just be a little quick for him today and he is coming off a stress fracture sustained in his last run at Haydock. I’m also happy to take on Djakadam on this ground based on the results of last start against Sizing John.
Strategy: Sizing John – 4 units @ $2.06 to win